Sunday, October 25, 2009


Okay, I didn't do as much reading as I had hoped to. I did finish Murder Came Calling by Nora Leduc. Excellent book. I would highly recommend this book to anyone looking for a good mystery.

Why would a woman who is scared to death of water commit suicide by throwing herself into a lake?

After her mother's body is discovered at the cover, Annie Townsend confronts the fact that her father may be a murderer. Desperate to discover the truth, she launches her own investigation. With a growing list of suspects and no leads, she teams up with prison toughened, Sam O'Brien, a man her family despises.

Soon, Annie finds herself caught in a web of her own suspicious. Far worse, she's attracted to Sam and must protect her heart from a man branded by his criminal past and imprisoned by his hardened heart.

Cleared of his crime, Sam wants to live his life in solitary peace away from the prying press. When the tenacious Annie catapults into his left, he finds the opportunity to prove himself worthy to love again by catching a killer. ISBN-13: 978-1-60313-438-5

I hope everyone that was reading enjoyed the read-a-thon and made good progress.

Saturday, October 24, 2009


The read-a-thon started this morning. I got a late start due to waking up with a migraine. After waiting for the migraine medication to kick in, I have finally started reading my friend, Nora Leduc's book Murder Came Calling.

I will be meeting up with author Denise Robbins in Nashua at Borders at 12:30 to read before her book signing. Come support her and Nora Leduc at this book signing along with other authors.

After the book signing at Borders, we will be headed over to Panera in Nashua to continue reading. Grab a book and come join us!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Fear in Writers

I am a writer. The process of getting words onto a page, knowing that someday that book will be read and enjoyed, is an exciting prospect. However as you journey through the writing process there is more to it. Finishing a manuscript and polishing it, and polishing it and polishing it, on some days take sheer determination to sit down and go through the process. As the time gets closer to submissions for that manuscript, it can be down right terrifying.

As I prepare my list of submissions for my completed manuscript, 99% of me is ready to jump in and start the process--the waiting process. Yes, it is a waiting game after the submissions are made. However, that 1% says STOP. That 1% is fear. Fear of rejection, fear of failure.

While I push on through my journey as a writer, that 1% part of me needs to be shoved aside. I am writer. In being a writer, I know I must set aside my fear and continue the journey.

Part of pushing aside fear is knowing you are not the only writer with these fears. You are not the only writer with frustrations of scenes not working, rejections coming in. The best thing you can do is reach out to other writers who know those same emotions. The support you receive from other writers pushes aside that 1% for me. Gives me the confidence of yes, I am a writer and fear will not stop me.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Let's Read

Reading -- a childhood favorite past time. In part I have my mom to thank for that. Every summer as children, we had to read every afternoon for some quiet time. Not only did it build our love for reading, but it allowed us to escape into the world of what was on those pages. Over the years I have expanded my reading into just about anything.

As my own children started to read, I created the same "quiet time" in the afternoons that I had grown up with. When the kids were really young, we would spend time with me reading to them in the afternoon. Now my two daughters read constantly. We share our books and I love to read whatever they are reading -- even if it really isn't an interest of mine, it keeps the lines of communication open between me and my teenage daughters as we talk about what we read.

Imagine my excitement when I saw this post on one of my writer friend's blog, Denise Robbins. What a great idea!!! I will take any excuse I can to pick up a book and read. Follow this link for more information

Let's Read. Let me hear from you if you decide to read along with us!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

The Success Story - Autism Part 5

Our journey continued as my son got ready to make the transition to the school system at age three from Early Intervention. I must say after hearing a number of horror stories, I was extremely nervous about having the IEP meeting for the first time. The school’s special education coordinator requested that my son’s speech pathologist be present at the meeting. What a surprise to have the school ask her what exactly she felt my son needed and then everything was implemented. It was a very smooth transition.

The next hurdle was that my son was still using sign language as his way of communicating and the school speech pathology was “rusty” in her usage of it. The school’s speech pathologist was very good about coming to the house near the end of my son’s Early Intervention time and sitting in on the sessions to “learn about him”.

The hardest part of the transition was moving on away from “Jude”, the Early Intervention speech pathologist. She had become my son’s life line. She had brought him out of his shell. He was out of the closet where had sat rocking. He was communicating, and we even had eye contact more times than not. My son was devastated to know that Jude wouldn’t be coming any more.

Starting with the school was a tough schedule for my son. Not only did they put him in a small preschool three days away, but he also has speech therapy twice a week and occupational therapy twice a week, overlapping so he was out of the house four days a week. It was a very regimented schedule. In the time frame, the family was in turmoil, which my son spent a lot of time shut down due the family dynamics. His father and I were going through a divorce, the house was for sale and we were getting ready to move in with my parents.

The summer before kindergarten started we finally settled in to a new house and settled into a routine that my son responded to. In June at kindergarten orientation, the occupational therapist had to take my son out of the room in order to do sensory therapy so he could function. He missed the whole orientation. By the time, school started in September, he was settled and functioning very well.

At the end of his kindergarten year, my son was placed on a “consult only” list for speech pathology. Occupational therapy was still seeing him at school once a week for sensory therapy. He was flourishing in school and loved it.

We were meeting yearly at that point to introduce his new teacher to his IEP. However, at the end of first grade I was told he no longer qualified for an IEP due to the fact that he was not academically delayed. After testing in the prior spring, he had tested with math at a fourth grade level as the highest level in academics and never tested less than at least six months older than he was. That meeting was the hardest one for me to sit in. The tears flowed as fear gripped me. What would happen to him? They decided to put him on a 504 plan, which still kept him with a list of cues for his teachers as to his diagnosis.

Years flew by it seemed as my son grew more and more skilled in coping with his autism. He would come to me and ask for sensory therapy, but as time went by it was fewer and fewer between times that he needed it. Usually more around holidays or vacations.

The hardest meeting I had to sit in was the year my son was in sixth grade. The tears flowed uncontrollably as I was told he no longer qualified for the 504 plan. He had progressed to the point that he handled things very well in stride. There are times he still shuts down a bit at home, but he can hold it together at school. This was what we had dreamed and strived for. The hard work paid off, but what a let down. After all the years of being an advocate for my son – and seeing my son work so hard to learn sign language and then speaking – the feeling of relief was overwhelming.

This child at age two couldn’t stand to be in a gymnasium without headphones, a vibrating teether and a weighed vest. At age 12, he know wants to be a NBA player and loves basketball to the point that he will shoot hoops all winter outside. It’s amazing to me that this child, who used to sit in a closet and rock, not make eye contact at all and have violent tendencies when he was frustrated, is now an honor student, an amazing athlete and is the most loving child I have ever seen. Every day when he hugs me and tells me he loves me, my heart swells. For a child that never would hug, every hug is meaningful and never taken for granted.

If I have learned anything from this journey it is you can’t take anything for granted. Every small step is a major victory.

Autism is an unknown disorder. Every child is different, which makes diagnosing the children harder. One child may have more difficulty in speech while another speaks, but has more trouble with sensory and social issues. The children on this spectrum range with IQs from 10 to genius level.

It’s a spectrum that people need more education on. But in all that you hear in movies and talk shows where they show the worse case scenario – there are huge success stories out there like my son who had Early Intervention early in his left (13 months) and now you would never know unless you knew him when he was younger. Yes, he still has moments where he is overwhelmed and overloaded and needs help to come back to our world, but they are becoming fewer and farther between.

What a journey it is has been – one that is not finished, but I am fortunate to have been part of this journey.